Many diabetics struggle with keeping their blood sugar levels under control to maintain a steady level of energy and prevent many diseases. Now, researchers confirm that blood sugar also plays an important role in maintaining healthy eyes, and diabetics can reduce their risk of vision loss by making changes in their diet and lifestyle.
A 25-year study published in an issue of Opthalmology indicates that diabetics who can keep their blood sugar levels under control can reduce their risk of developing retinopathy. Retinopathy is an eye disorder that damages the eye's retina and deterioriates vision; diabetics are prone to developing this disorder because of fluctuating blood sugar levels, but taking insulin and eating low-glycemic foods are proving to be valuable strategies for lowering the risk of developing the disorder.
While some diabetics may turn to laser eye surgery to improve their vision, only a few are suitable candidates for LASIK or LASEK. Laser eye surgeons typically conduct a series of tests and review a patient's health status to 'qualify' them for laser eye surgery, and diabetes may be an obstacle for many.
The recent findings offer some hope for reducing the risk of vision loss with simple dietary and lifestyle changes. The Wisconsin Epidemiologic Study of Diabetic Retinopathy recently reported that a greater body mass index can also increase the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. This means diabetics who commit to a consistent exercise program and eat a healthy diet to maintain their weight may also be able to protect their vision for the long-term.